What is MU-MIMO? The technology to improve Wi-Fi connectivity is still not very popular, as compatible routers are still quite expensive. However, it should grow in the coming years, with more devices having the resource implemented.
What is MU-MIMO?
MIMO is the acronym for Multiple Inputs, Multiple Outputs. It is a system developed to achieve higher rates of transmission in wireless networks and is the result of the constant evolution of wireless technology, especially Wi-Fi.
It consists of using multiple antennas to transmit data from a network and the more antennas, the faster and more efficient the connection of the various connected devices. The technology is divided into SU-MIMO and MU-MIMO, respectively for a single user and Multi-User.
MU-MIMO refers to multiple users or devices, connected to the same router, using multiple inputs and outputs simultaneously, without harming the connection.
How does MU-MIMO work?
Older routers, before the implementation of MIMO priests, could only send and receive data in one direction. Thus, they could only communicate with one device connected to the Wi-Fi network at a time, even though there are others also connected.
Think of one faucet and four cups, one for each connected device. When one of them is receiving or sending content (for example, you are watching movies via streaming on your PC), the connection is prioritized for this gadget, meaning this glass will get the water first.
The other devices are on hold, and if one of them makes a similar request (someone on the TV in the room also decides to turn on the video game and play online), the router will have to interleave the transmission so that it does not appear that the connection is being split. Or, the person on tap will fill up a little of the two glasses at a time. Although the user does not notice the interruptions, this is how the routers work.
In an MU-MIMO system, each antenna of the router would be in charge of transmitting a different data for each connected user (device). Depending on the configuration, it may have two or three antennas for transmission, and another two or three for receiving data. Thus, one pair would be dedicated to the PC, and another to the video game, without interruption of the connection.
With a MU-MIMO router, the user would no longer have connection lags during an online game, mainly caused by competing devices on the Wi-Fi network.
Which routers use MU-MIMO?
MU-MIMO technology has been present since 2015 when the first compatible routers arrived, or the manufacturers began to implement the feature in their new products.
In general, all these new routers are aimed at the gamer public, so they have very flashy designs; Another feature of an MU-MIMO router is the number of antennas, which range from four to eight, according to its configuration.
However, the factor that most highlights an MU-MIMO router from the rest is its price. The simplest models from manufacturers such as TP-Link and Trendnet range from $50 to $150, while the most powerful models from brands such as ASUS and others can range from $250 to $750, being prohibitive for most ordinary users.
However, over time the new communication standard should become more popular, and present even in simpler router models, since MU-MIMO is a natural evolution of Wi-Fi technology. take some time.